Amazon unveils a faster Fire TV Cube, soundbar, and more
What better place to announce new entertainment gadgets than at IFA 2019, Europe’s largest tech convention? At the iconic Bolle Festsäle in Berlin this evening, Amazon took the wraps off of over 20 new Fire TV devices to fill out its growing portfolio, including a refreshed Fire TV Cube, a Fire TV Edition Soundbar, and a slew of new Fire TV Edition television sets.
Amazon also announced new partnerships with Discover and Eurosport for Fire TV customers in Europe. Starting today, every customer in France, Italy, and Spain who purchased a Fire TV Basic Edition will get a free over-the-air update that includes Alexa, and this week, the Alexa Voice Remote will become available in those regions alongside the Fire TV Stick 4K and Fire TV Stick.
“Customers have told us how much they use and love Fire TV Edition smart TVs in the United States and Canada, with millions of devices sold and an average rating of more than 4 stars across all models,” said vice president of Amazon Fire TV Marc Whitten in a statement. “Today we’re thrilled to introduce innovative Fire TV Edition smart TVs and the first-ever Fire TV Edition soundbar from global brands that customers know and love. We can’t wait for customers to experience these new devices with the Fire TV experience built-in.”
Fire TV Cube
The new Fire TV Cube, which comes roughly a year after the debut of the original Fire TV Cube, packs a speedy six-core processor that Amazon claims is twice as fast as its quad-core predecessor. Support for 4K and Dolby Vision HDR content up to 60 frames per second is in tow, as is a far-field microphone array for voice commands.
The new Fire TV Cube processes a handful of common controls on-device, boosting its response time by up to four times. The mics use beamforming technology — the same featured in Amazon’s Echo speakers — to combine the signals from individual microphones and suppress noise, reverberation, content playing on the Fire TV Cube, and competing speech. There’s also a bundled remote with an integrated microphone for situations when viewers are out of audible range.
Like its progenitor, the new Fire TV Cube leverages a combo of infrared technology and HDMI-CEC to control a range of soundbars, TVs, surround sound systems, and cable and satellite b